A third of El Salvador's population is actively using its bitcoin wallet Chivo, President Nayib Bukele says
Emerson Flores/APHOTOGRAFIA/Getty Images
- El Salvador's president has said 2.1 million people in the country are actively using the bitcoin wallet
Chivo. Nayib Bukelesaid the wallet now has more users than any single bank in El Salvador.
- Yet the figures suggests a mixed response to bitcoin becoming legal tender in the country.
AdvertisementEl Salvador President Nayib Bukele has said a third of the country's population is actively using the Chivo cryptocurrency wallet, after the government made
Bukele tweeted at the weekend that 2.1 million Salvadorans were actively using the wallet. "Chivo is not a bank, but in less than 3 weeks, it now has more users than any bank in El Salvador and is moving fast to have more users that [sic] ALL BANKS IN EL SALVADOR combined," he said. "This is wild!"
The claim from Bukele is the latest insight into how El Salvador's controversial adoption of bitcoin is panning out.
El Salvador officially launched bitcoin as legal tender on September 7, meaning businesses have to accept it as payment, but the rollout was far from smooth.
The decision was criticized by the International Monetary Fund and met with street protests by some Salvadorans. On the day of the launch, bitcoin fell sharply after the government had to take the Chivo wallet offline due to capacity problems.
Read more: I tried to use bitcoin in El Salvador. The rollout is a hot mess.
Chivo is a
The regular use of the wallet by 2.1 million people, according to Bukele's figures, suggests a mixed response from the country's population. It suggests two-thirds of the country have little interest in using bitcoin.
AdvertisementBukele - who many see as an authoritarian leader - has argued bitcoin becoming legal tender will give people easier access to financial services and reduce remittance costs for Salvadorans abroad.
JPMorgan has called El Salvador's move an "ill-conceived experiment." The bank said crypto assets are very volatile and so prices in shops are likely to fluctuate wildly.
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